The U.S. Commerce Department announced the Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $3 million grant to the County of Cape May to help build a 20,000 square foot multi-tenant building that will fulfill the needs of companies in the Unmanned Aerial Systems (drone) industry.
The building will be located within the Cape May County Airport, which is owned by the New Castle-based Delaware and Bay Authority. The DRBA also operates airports in New Castle and Dover.
According to estimates, the project is expected to create 130 jobs and spur $1.9 million in private investment.
This project will provide resources to UAS/drone businesses, a growing industry in the region. The River and Bay Authority has also pioneered the use of drones at its facilities, including the Cape May Airport area.
One project tested in Cape May by Verizon involves the use of a large drone that would wireless service for phones and other devices in the event of a disaster that leads to tower outages. (See below)
This unmanned drone with a 17-ft. wingspan just launched from Cape May, N.J.
It's a flying cell site to show how Verizon provides cell coverage in an emergency. pic.twitter.com/BG3AzkHpV0
— Verizon News (@VerizonNews) March 8, 2018
Companies in the facility will each be provided with 5,000 square-feet of space that will include offices and manufacturing areas.
This project was made possible by the regional planning efforts led by the South Jersey Economic Development District.
EDA funds the South Jersey Economic Development District as a way to strengthen the area that has suffered from the loss of manufacturing jobs.